Ruco Chan: Becoming an Actor by Chance
Ruco Chan (陳展鵬) may be the hot-blooded hero in TVB’s latest hit drama, A Fist Within Four Walls <城寨英雄>, but the actor’s personality differs vastly in real life. Ruco comes off as cool and collected, someone who does not seem to joke often. In a recent interview, Ruco spoke about why he prefers to keep a reserved side and the twist of fate that made him become an actor.
Confirming that he is not someone who likes to open up to others easily, Ruco shrugged, “I can actually talk for hours and laugh with people. But I don’t need to, nor do I want to. I’ll do that while I’m on the job but when I’m off duty, I want to be me again and I don’t want to be the on camera version of myself. If you personally think I’m boring in real life, then it’s okay, I’ll be boring. Tony Leung (梁朝偉) is boring! As long as your acting is good, it doesn’t matter!”
From Ping Pong Player to Actor
Although already 39-years-old, Ruco only started taking on lead roles in the last few years. While a few of Ruco’s roles in the past have been more mature roles, his character in A Fist Within Four Walls is only 26-years-old. Ruco laughed, “I think it’s funny how I’m nearing 40, yet I’m playing a character in his twenties. I think this qualifies as a challenge!”
While Ruco’s popularity has soared due to high ratings of A Fist Within Four Walls, it was notx always his dream to become an actor. In fact, Ruco came from a humble family where his father was a firefighter and his mother worked as a seamstress. Growing up in a strict family, Ruco had a fairly disciplined childhood.
He recalled, “I played ping pong for eight to nine years when I was little and I trained for over five years. In middle school, my daily schedule followed the same pattern. I would get off school at 3 pm and then go back to Hong Kong Sports Institute to train. After practice, I would eat dinner and get home around 9 to10 pm. Then I would sleep and repeat everything the next day. I even practiced on Saturday mornings before competitions on Sundays.”
Ruco finally quit when his coached retired. He could have continued to play and represent Hong Kong, and eventually open his own ping pong studio. However, Ruco admitted that he actually found the sport quite boring.
After completing Form 5, Ruco was uncertain about his future. Hoping to have more options, he applied for Form 6, vocational training, as well as acting programs at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and TVB. Surprised that he got accepted into the Academy, Ruco was even more shocked when he found out he was also accepted into TVB’s acting class.
Initially, Ruco’s father did not allow him to become an actor, but a phone call from TVB’s acting class changed his mind. Ruco revealed that the representor from TVB acting class promised to cut Ruco’s contract short if he became a rebellious teenager. While Ruco thought TVB would promote him due to their eagerness to enroll him in acting class, Ruco was only offered cameo roles for the next few years.
Finally catching his break playing Jordan Chan‘s (陳小春) brother in 1996’s Big Bullet <衝鋒隊怒火街頭>, Ruco followed with supporting roles in over a dozen films. While Ruco eventually signed to become a singer, his records company PolyGram was merged with Universal Music Studios, which ultimately cancelled his contract.
Unlike many of his fellow actor friends, Ruco’s road to success was fairly bumpy at first. However, due to hard work and perseverance, Ruco finally gained the viewers’ approval after rejoining TVB 2008 and subsequently became one of the station’s most heavily promoted actors.
Source: East Week
This article is written by Su for JayneStars.com.